Skip to main content

The only guy Michael Jordan used to fear on the court wasn't even a basketball player

A former teammate is sure MJ feared this guy everytime he showed up
North Carolina Tar Heels guard Michael Jordan and New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor

Michael Jordan and Lawrence Taylor

After witnessing the exceptional competitiveness of Michael Jordan throughout his 15-year NBA career, we could safely say that “His Airness” feared no one on the basketball court.

However, we should also be ready to be proven wrong. As shocking as it is, there was one guy who used to give Jordan the chills.

One guy always intimidated MJ

According to MJ’s former North Carolina teammate, Buzz Peterson, Jordan already proved that he was always up for the challenge even before entering the league.

At the time, Peterson said that the 6-foot-4 Jordan would take on anybody who stepped on the basketball court but would always feel “a little bit of fear” whenever American football player Lawrence Taylor showed up.

There is one guy that I always thought, and I know to this day — I don’t know if Michael won’t admit or not, but I swear that he had a little bit of fear of — and it wasn’t a basketball player. It was a football player by the name of Lawrence Taylor. LT, phenomenal athlete,” Peterson told The Athletic in 2020.

Peterson further revealed that Taylor was a tremendous athlete who could definitely play basketball. Even more interesting, LT loved to challenge Jordan.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

[Taylor] Could guard east to west, as quick as anybody, could jump, big hands, strong and was a bit crazy,” he continued. “So Michael, in the back of his mind said, ‘S**t, I better be careful with this guy.’ And LT always wanted to guard him.

Jordan admits only one player was better than him

Like Peterson, we may never know if Jordan really feared Taylor back then. However, we are certain that there was one player who was always better than MJ—his older brother Larry.

Michael and Larry both played for Laney High School. Back then, it was Larry, not Michael, who was the team’s star. In fact, their father, James, even divulged between his two sons, it was Larry who possessed some serious basketball talent. On the other hand, Michael was not even the best hopper in the family.

All these years, we knew little about his game. Finally, a vast number of Jordan fans learned about Larry and his incredible basketball skills when he was featured in an episode of ESPN’s 10-part docuseries, “The Last Dance.”

He’s the Air Jordan. I’m number 2, he’s 1,” Michael said of Larry in “The Last Dance.”

Unfortunately, Larry did not become an NBA star like Michael; on the other hand, Lawrence Taylor wound up playing professional football in the NFL, and is considered no of the best to ever do it.

Still, it’s pretty thrilling to know that despite being regarded as the greatest basketball player of all time, Jordan also dealt with some serious competition. 

Willy Hernangomez says Zion Williamson is on a mission this season

Willy Hernangomez offers a frightening take on Zion Williamson ahead of this season -“He wants to destroy everybody”

Hernangomez said Williamson "wants to destroy everybody" in his return to the court after missing the entire 2021-22 season

James Harden said that his explosiveness is getting there after it was noticeably absent during his stint with the Sixers last season

James Harden and his quest to regain his explosiveness for the Philadelphia 76ers: "It's getting there"

Harden clearly wasn't himself during his first few months with the 76ers, but the good news is that he believes his explosiveness is getting back to what it used to be

Dirk Nowitzki at the 1998 Nike Hoop Summit

"Between practices I had to get tutoring in a separate room" - Dirk Nowitzki used to bring a tutor with him while traveling with Germany's junior national team

Dirk Nowitzki revealed that he had to bring a private tutor with him during his days with Germany's junior national team as he had to play and study at the same time.

Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson

"Are you willing to come back and be a coachable player?"-How Phil Jackson talked to Kobe Bryant before they reunited in 2006

The time Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson spent apart from each other made them realize that they needed each other to accomplish their goals.

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky outearns several NBA players

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky is closer to making a million each year than some NBA players on minimum contracts.

ben-wallace-darvin-ham-min

“I know he’s a great locker room guy!”- Ben Wallace believes Darvin Ham will do great things with the Lakers

Darvin Ham and Ben Wallace won a title together and their bond will forever remain tight.

Reggie Miller doing the choke sign

Reggie Miller on talking to New York Knicks fans: 'They love to come up and do the choke sign. They think it’s so cool'

Reggie Miller said most Knicks fans still hate him and they let him know about it by doing doing his iconic choke taunt in 1995.